|Veronique Pozner, the mother of Noah Pozner, 6, was escorted by a rabbi after services at a funeral home in Fairfield, Conn.|
NEWTOWN, Conn. — Noah Pozner loved tacos, so much so that he talked of wanting to be the manager of a taco factory when he grew up; that way, he would be able to eat a taco whenever he wanted. He had a way of charming his elders and loved his siblings, including a twin sister who was in another classroom that day.
Jack Pinto adored the New York Giants and proudly wore a red Little League cap adorned with a large N for the name of his hometown. He was a spinning top of a boy, bouncing from one activity to the next, as if the day could never contain all the fun to be had.
The people of Newtown buried these two boys under an ashen sky on Monday afternoon, in the first of the many funerals to follow last week’s massacre at the Sandy Hook Elementary School. They were both 6 years old.
The realization that Jack and Noah were gone settled like the December chill upon the Honan Funeral Home in Newtown, where a Christian service was held for Jack, and upon the Abraham L. Green and Sons Funeral Home in Fairfield, where a Jewish service was held for Noah.
An 8-year-old boy named Nolan Krieger, dressed in khaki pants and a plaid dress shirt, captured the intensifying sense of loss as he left the service for his friend Jack. “I used to do everything with him,” Nolan said, rubbing his eyes. “We liked to wrestle. We played Wii. We just played all the time. I can’t believe I’m never going to see him again.”
The how of their deaths is, by now, internationally known. A 20-year-old man named Adam Lanza shot and killed his mother on Friday morning. Then, armed with an assault rifle and two handguns, he shot his way into the elementary school and killed 20 first-grade children and six school officials, all women, before killing himself.
The why of their deaths, though, is still being pieced together. The school remains a crime scene, and law enforcement officials said they expected to spend weeks, if not months, investigating angles and interviewing witnesses — including children — to develop the complete, unsettling picture.
First, though, there was Monday, just after Hanukkah, a week before Christmas Eve — and what was supposed to be the first school day after the devastation in the classroom on Friday.
In Fairfield, about 25 miles south of Newtown, mourners formed a somber queue outside the two-story, white-clapboard Green funeral home. Many were from Temple Adath Israel, the Pozner family’s Conservative synagogue in Newtown. Dannel P. Malloy, the governor of Connecticut, and one of its United States senators, Richard Blumenthal, were also there.
A little girl in a pink hooded coat, clutching a floppy stuffed animal, served as a reminder of the innocence lost, as a couple of bomb-sniffing dogs did, in their own way.
Lt. James Perez of the Fairfield Police Department said that nonspecific threats of protests at the funeral home, coupled with “stupid comments” on the Internet and on social media, had prompted the unusually large police presence. “You have to prepare,” the officer said. “Newtown wasn’t warned either.”
Lieutenant Perez said that he had been inside, and had spoken with the family — as best as he could. “To see it be a child, it’s just beyond — ” he said, adding, “I didn’t have any words.”
During the service, Noah’s teenage brother, Michael, spoke for himself and for his other siblings. Diane Buchanan, the mother of one of Michael’s friends, said the young man had to pause to gather his emotions as he spoke. “We no longer have a brother,” she recalled him saying, “but now we have a guardian angel.”
Noah’s mother, Veronique, also eulogized Noah, and talked of his boundless aspirations. In addition to a taco-factory manager, she said, he also wanted to be a doctor. Throughout, observers said, she spoke with a remarkable poise that seemed meant to help others cope with the loss.
“But the main thing she left was one point,” said Rabbi Edgar Gluck, who splits his time between Krakow, Poland, and Borough Park in Brooklyn. “She said that whenever she told him ‘I love you,’ his answer to her was: ‘Not as much as I love you.’ ”
Outside the Honan Funeral Home in Newtown, Conn., where services were held for Jack Pinto, 6. “We just played all the time,” one friend said. “I can’t believe I’m never going to see him again.” ...
READ MORE: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/18/nyregion/two-funerals-for-two-6-year-old-boys-in-newtown.html?pagewanted=2&_r=0&hp